WFAA Policies for Event and Registration Services for Campus-Sponsored Events

Last Updated: 4.23.2018

An event can be defined as an engagement, development or stewardship activity, intended for UW alumni, donors and prospects. Events typically necessitate vendor contracting, logistical arrangements, procuring facilities, food and beverage arrangements, ground transportation, technical support, etc. Events often require several months of significant advanced planning.

Examples of events include: Chancellor’s lunch, a building dedication/groundbreaking, Bascom Hill Society Fall event, Homecoming pre-game tailgates or a major gift recognition celebration.

The WFAA only provides event and registration services for events that contribute to the shared advancement mission of the university and the WFAA. The expectation is that supported events contribute to the overall advancement of the sponsoring school, college or department.

If the WFAA provides event services, it is required that all event planning, legal review and financial disbursement functions become the sole responsibility of the WFAA. The WFAA is unable to provide event services for any event where the primary responsibility of payments for expenditures is the responsibility of the university or where the WFAA is unable to exert complete control over the event planning, legal review and financial disbursement functions. The WFAA is unable to provide event services for any event where planning is already in progress, i.e. contracts have been executed or the event date does not allow for adequate support due to immediacy or capacity of the WFAA’s Events team.

The WFAA events services does not extend to activities that are primarily administrative in nature and do not require formal contracts, legal review or comprehensive event professional services. Examples might include: departmental meetings for faculty and staff, small (1-20) group meal reservations or occasions where the audience is primarily the campus community and/or students.

The WFAA registration services can be provided for campus driven events that meet the eligibility requirements listed below. These services are available even if WFAA event services are not being used. 

The Events and Registration teams welcome the opportunity to answer questions and provide clarification at events@supportuw.org.

Eligibility:

  1. To be eligible to use WFAA event services:
    1. The INTENDED audience of the activities must be UW alumni, donors and/or stakeholders
    2. The PRIMARY purpose of the activity must be engagement, cultivation or stewardship of UW alumni, donors and stakeholders
  2. If the activity is eligible for WFAA events services, it is necessary that:
    1. The activity timeline allows for adequate planning and delivery of services
    2. The scope of the activity aligns with available WFAA resources
    3. There is identified WFAA staff leadership and leadership from the campus unit to provide guidance and make decisions about the activity.
    4. The event aligns with departmental, divisional and university advancement priorities
  3. If there is a gift component to the event registration it must meet the criteria stated on the Gift Processing policies document.

Before engaging the WFAA

  1. Attain campus unit leader (Dean, Director) approval for the activity
  2. Confirm with the campus unit business office:
    1. What event expenses can or will be paid by university funds
    2. How vendor contracts will be initiated and paid
  3. Which WFAA gift fund(s) will be used, if any
  4. Obtain permission from the Dean/Director/fund manager to use WFAA gift funds for the activity or transfer

Process and Guidelines:

Once the activity has been determined to be in scope for the WFAA and necessary approvals are obtained from the campus unit decision-maker, the workflow process follows these guidelines:

If university funds are being used to pay for the majority of the event/activity, generally the responsibility for making arrangements will fall to the campus unit, including initiating and signing vendor contracts. When vendor contracts are initiated and signed by a campus unit representative, then vendors need to be paid directly by the campus unit out of a university fund. WFAA gift funds may cover appropriate costs if a donor fund supporting the activity exists. WFAA may still be able to provide registration services, please see the WFAA registration services section below for additional information.

If WFAA gift funds are being used for the majority of the activity, it is likely that the activity is eligible for event services by WFAA, and the WFAA events team can make the logistical arrangements. When the WFAA events team is making the arrangements for an event or activity, then the WFAA must initiate and sign vendor contracts, and will pay vendors directly. Reimbursement for expenses will be sought from the campus unit’s WFAA gift fund.

WFAA registration services are generally available to support campus unit-sponsored engagement, cultivation and stewardship activity for alumni, donors and stakeholders, if the WFAA tools are capable of meeting the needs of the activity. A nominal administrative fee will apply and all registration revenue collected is required to be deposited into a UWF fund.

WFAA fund reporting services are generally available to support campus unit-sponsored engagement, cultivation and stewardship activity for alumni, donors and stakeholders.

WFAA gift processing services are generally available to support campus unit-sponsored engagement, cultivation and stewardship activity for alumni, donors and stakeholders when the event includes payments with a gift component. Gifts must be eligible for tax-deductibility under IRS rules. See Gift Processing policies for more information.

UW Faculty/staff travel will be reimbursed by WFAA when the faculty/staff member is traveling at the request of WFAA to be part of the program at an alumni/donor event. Faculty/staff travel will be reimbursed through the university when traveling to alumni/donor events for other purposes.

Campus Events: WFAA Support Decision Process

Is the purpose of the event development, stewardship, cultivation or engagement and is the intended audience UW alumni and donors?

Yes No
WFAA could initiate and sign contracts Campus unit signs contracts and pays vendors
WFAA could directly pay vendors Seek other event planning services
WFAA could support the event planning Seek other registration services
WFAA could support registration needs*

  • Determine funding source
  • Could support Gift Processing
Confirm with WFAA Gift Processing if the revenue for this event meets the Gift WFAA Processing Policies

Is the WFAA Events team and/ or Registration team able to provide services for the event (timeline, capacity, scope)?

Yes No
WFAA Events team supports the planning Seek other event planning services
WFAA initiates and signs contracts Campus unit initiates and signs contracts
WFAA Registration team supports the event* Campus unit directly pays vendors
WFAA pays vendors

  • Confirm funding source(s)
  • WFAA will pay expenses from a gift fund
  • Gift fund permission given in project request
Campus unit seeks other registration services

Will WFAA gift funds be used for the event or activity that campus unit is managing?

Yes No
Campus unit initiates and signs contracts Campus unit initiates and signs contracts
Campus unit directly pays vendors

  • Request WFAA do a fund transfer from gift fund
Campus unit directly pays vendors

  • Request WFAA do a fund transfer from gift fund

Can university funds pay for the activity or portions of the activity?

Yes No
Work with WFAA in advance to clarify fund Consider possible use of WFAA gift funds

  • Request WFAA do a fund transfer from gift fund
Work with WFAA in advance on workflow

*Administrative fees may apply to registration support for campus-sponsored events/activities.

If your event qualifies for services, please submit a Project Request form.

Definitions:

WFAA
The Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association is the merged organization of the UW Foundation and the Wisconsin Alumni Association (since 2014).
Advancement (from CASE.org)
Strategic, integrated method of managing relationships to increase understanding and support among an educational institution’s key constituents.  The primary core disciplines of educational advancement are alumni relations, communications, marketing and fundraising. Advancement professionals work on behalf of educational institutions to:

  1. Secure private financial support from potential donors committed to the mission of the institution
  2. Engage alumni in the life of the institution as volunteers, advocates and supporters
  3. Promote or market the institution to prospective students, their parents and others
  4. Communicate about the institution with those who have a stake in its success, including community members, business leaders, government officials, the press and others
Event
An engagement, development or stewardship activity, intended for university alumni, donors and prospects, which necessitates vendor contracting or other logistical arrangements that would benefit from expert knowledge.
WFAA Events Services
Functional areas within the Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association that support engagement and development activities, including:event and meeting planning; vendor contracting and payment.
WFAA Registration Services
Functional area within the Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association that supports the creation of events in ABE CRM, building of event registration sites, and processing of event payments.